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CHARLES J. ROSEBAULT. Saladin. Prince of Chivalry

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CHARLES J. ROSEBAULT.
Saladin. Prince of Chivalry
page 252



armor, so that they could be told from men only by the ornaments on their ankles, fought savagely and tortured the Moslem prisoners. In all these contests the Sultan was in the forefront, even though he was still suffering, and the weight of his armor must have been galling. His " eagerness and anxiety throughout was like that of a mother robbed of her infant." In one battle, lasting two days, he was so engrossed mentally his physician could not get him to eat more than a mouthful. But, while he was struggling between illness and anxiety, the common soldiers were beginning to find the constant battling monotonous. This was true of the enemy also, so it happened frequently when Moslem and Frank had fought each other to a standstill they would stop suddenly and fall into friendly conversation. It even happened that sounds of revelry rising from the plain to startle the city and the two camps would be explained by the mingling of bands of opponents in song and dance. The feeling of boredom went so far that set programs were arranged. Boys from the city and boys from the camp of the Franks were pitted against each other, with their elders egging them on, applauding their valor and laying odds on the results. Of course, this did not interfere at all with the fighting of the quondam friends later on, and presently there was a sanguinary conflict which cut off all further thought of friendly amusement for a long time. The Battle of Acre could easily have brought about


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